“It’s compact and it’s got reverse drive,” notes an observer. Another reckons the wheels will help them get the machine onto the tractor and he says the frame should stop it rocking on the linkage.
“That’s a nice little unit. We could test that — it will fit our tractor no trouble,” confirms one of the reviewers.
Nearby, the Bomford B315 invites a closer look. It requires a tractor of 35hp or 40hp. Again there is the option of a flail head or cutter bar but this machine also benefits from having mechanical parallel arm geometry to allow changes to the reach without the need to adjust the height. It will fit one of the tractors available at the college.
One tester is impressed by the price of the unit. He says: “It looks solidly built and at £8,000 it is good value for money. But the proof is in the performance and the finish.” So we could be testing this one too.
Then there’s the Kestrel. It’s one of Bomford’s newest machines and it features a twin pump drive and has a maximum reach of 4.9m. Available with left- or right-hand build, it’s a three-point linkage mounted machine and is suitable for tractors around 45hp. Controls are via low-friction cables with head float as standard.
“It certainly looks easy enough to operate. I’d like to see the finish it gives,” says one tester. Time to move on.
As the college already uses a Twose hedgecutter, we visit the Devon-based company’s stand to see what else is on offer. “That’s the one we’ve got — the TF25,” our man points out. It seems identical to the Wren, but then again it might be a little more compact.
Twose is currently promoting a new machine, the TS585, but it’s a big machine that requires at least 85hp. So should we test the FT25? Or is it the Wren? We are in for a surprise. There’s yet another identical machine on McConnel’s stand. This time it’s called the Power Arm 27.
Bomford, McConnel and Twose are all Alamo Group companies and, as such, they share the marketing of some of their equipment. Well, you learn something new every day.
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